The first ever online gaming license has been issued in Spain, with the Casino Gran Madrid the beneficiary. The license was issued of May 17th and testing will take place over the coming weeks, ahead of a summer launch.

The land based Casino Gran Madrid played host to this year’s European Poker Tour Grand Final but is now venturing into the world of the online casino, having already signed an agreement with PlayTech that will see the company, known for its iPoker network, provide Casino Gran Madrid with the software for online blackjack, roulette and slots, as well as online poker.

Jorge Casanova, the director of information technology for Casino Gran Madrid, said of the news: “Casino Gran Madrid has always been committed to innovation and this time we could not do less.”

“Casino Gran Madrid will continue to operate under one brand because our aim is to leverage synergies for our customers, and remain true to our core values that have guided our performance — professionalism, rigor, experience, transparency, security — and with a software certified by official laboratories.”

The newly formed online casino will only accept players aged 18 or over, in accordance with local laws, and if the testing goes as planned, the online version of the Casino Gran Madrid could be launched as early as this summer.

The Chief Executive Officer of PlayTech, Mr Mor Weizer, said: “We are delighted to have secured this agreement with one of Europe’s largest and most respected land based operators. We expect this to be a significantly value accretive relationship, exemplifying our strategy to increase the number of regulated markets in which we operate.”

Spain joins other European countries like Italy, France and Estonia in opening its doors to legal online gambling, which is a refreshing contrast to the events currently taking place in the United States.